Message from McDaniel - Update Regarding COVID-19 Vaccine for Staff

  • Team OKCPS, 

    OKCPS leaders are continuing to work closely with our public health officials and other partners to finalize the COVID-19 vaccine deployment plan for our district staff. 

    OCCHD is still completing Phase 1 (Healthcare workforce) and early tiers of Phase 2 (First Responders and 65+) across Oklahoma County. While they continue with this important work, OKCPS has also begun working with Passport Health, a private contracted third-party provider, to host a closed Point of Distribution (POD) where we can make the vaccine available to OKCPS staff at a designated district facility. The vaccine will be offered to staff at no cost.

    Our target date for the first OKCPS POD is February 12th. However, it is important to note that the date is 100% dependent on our access to vaccine doses via Passport Health. We will share more logistical details, including how to sign up, with you soon.

    Because our vaccine allocation will likely be intermittent and very limited, public health officials have asked district leaders to prioritize distribution for staff in a way that mirrors the prioritization hierarchy being used at the state and local level, while also considering our district’s unique planning factors such as the OKCPS Return To Campus schedule and/or the amount of daily interaction with students within certain teams/positions. We will share more information with you regarding tiers in the coming days.

    While OKCPS works toward hosting our own POD opportunities with Passport Health, we continue to encourage all staff who are interested in the vaccine to also pre-register with the Oklahoma State Health Department using their online portal. The portal can be found at: https://vaccinate.oklahoma.gov/. Pre-registering will help keep you informed of public PODs available to you. Those interested in receiving the vaccine should take advantage of your first opportunity to do so -- whether that’s with OKCPS or via a state or local POD. 

    The health and safety of OKCPS students and staff remains our priority, and OKCPS is pleased to work with our public health partners to make the vaccine available to OKCPS staff who choose to participate as soon as possible. We will continue to share more information as it becomes available.

Update for People Age 65 And Older

  • OKCPS Staff, 

    We wanted to make you aware that the Oklahoma City County Health Department (OOCHD) will be adding vaccine events and locations to the state’s scheduler soon. OCCHD has asked OKCPS to notify our staff/teachers who are age 65 and older to register in the state's system if you are planning on receiving the vaccine. You may use this link to pre-register: https://vaccinate.oklahoma.gov/

    Once you are registered, you will be able to schedule appointments as they become available.

    Please see this link for the FAQ page about the scheduler portal. https://oklahoma.gov/covid19/vaccine-information/vaccine-faqs.html

Message from McDaniel - COVID-19 Vaccine Information for District Staff

  • Team OKCPS, 

    Yesterday, District leaders met with officials from the Oklahoma City County Health Department (OCCHD) to discuss the COVID-19 vaccine deployment plan for Oklahoma County and for our district staff. 

    We still don’t have all of the answers, but I do want to share the information that is available.  

    Let’s start with the process. Each week, the state of Oklahoma is allocated vaccines from the federal level and the state then allocates those doses based on their own pre-determined hierarchy. Oklahoma has chosen to distribute vaccines to the public via the county health departments. For us, that is the Oklahoma City County Health Department (OCCHD). Once OCCHD receives their allocation, they use their prioritization list to deploy vaccines within our community. 

    As you have likely heard, there are limited quantities of vaccine within the state and within the county. In fact, our public health officials indicated that they don’t even know how many they’ll receive from our federal partners from week to week. This makes planning for everyone very difficult. 

    While Oklahoma County has entered into the early stages of Phase 2 vaccinating first responders and those who are 65+, OCCHD is still working to complete Phase 1 vaccinations for Long Term Care residents and staff, health care workers providing direct COVID-19 care, public health officials conducting front line COVID-19 pandemic mitigation, and emergency medical technicians and paramedics. Once that is complete, educators will begin to receive the vaccine as part of the state’s Phase 2 plan, and we confirmed today that all OKCPS staff regardless of position will be eligible. 

    Because we are still waiting for our turn, OKCPS has not yet received our allotment of vaccine, and OCCHD officials have indicated it may be at least one month before it is available to educators in our county. Because of this delay, all OKCPS employees who meet the priority requirements to be vaccinated (age 65+, have comorbidities, etc) are encouraged to go ahead and sign-up to receive the vaccine at one of the upcoming state/county vaccination events. Please don’t wait for OKCPS to receive our allocation. 

    The Oklahoma State Health Department recently released an online portal that Oklahomans can use to register for a COVID-19 vaccine.  Appointments will not be added to the system until tomorrow; however, pre-registration is already available.  The portal can be found at: https://vaccinate.oklahoma.gov/. If you do pre-register, an email should be sent to you when you are eligible to schedule an appointment.

    While we wait for our vaccine allocation -- which we know will likely be intermittent and very limited -- district leaders are finalizing our own plan for how we’ll prioritize distribution for staff. Details are still pending, but our public health partners have recommended that we mirror the prioritization hierarchy being used at the state level, along with our district’s unique planning factors such as the OKCPS Return To Campus schedule and/or the amount of daily interaction with students within certain teams/positions. It is a work in progress.

    The health and safety of our staff and students is always a priority and we are committed to working closely with our partners at OCCHD to provide access to the vaccine for all district staff who choose to participate as soon as it’s available to us. 

    I will continue to update you as we learn more. In the meantime, it is important that we all remain vigilant in our hygiene and safety protocols, get tested if we believe we’ve been exposed, and do our part to help mitigate the spread of this virus.

    Let’s continue to work together, #TeamOKCPS.